Mediterranean Diet and Cheese fresco cheese feature image

Cheese is part of a healthy lifestyle!

Mediterranean Cheese and the Mediterranean Diet

Mediterranean style cheeses landed in Australia with the massive influx of Greeks and Italians in the 1940s. Seventy years on, fetta, haloumi, and mozzarella have become household staples and dominate menus across the country. Woodfired pizza joints, Greek tavernas, and breakfast menus in almost every café in Australia have one option or the other.

Cheese is a crucial part of the Mediterranean diet which is often praised as a healthy and sustainable dietary pattern. That’s right! Cheese is good for you. So why is cheese an important part of a healthy diet, and how often should you be eating it?

Health Benefits

The Mediterranean diet as a whole has been shown to reduce the risk of heart disease, stroke, type 2 diabetes and much more.

According to Nutrition Australia, cheese in particular is a fantastic source of protein, vitamin A, vitamin B12, riboflavin, phosphorus and zinc. Moreover, cheese is one of the best sources of calcium you can find – which is important because 50% of Australians aren’t getting enough calcium from their current diet. Calcium is important for strong bones and dental health due to its high mineral content.

Cheese has a low glycaemic index, and a balance of proteins that satiates you and makes you feel fuller quicker and for longer. This reduces the amount of food you are likely to eat during your next meal leaving you feeling satisfied.

How much cheese should I be eating?

Nutrition Australia has provided a helpful guide for the number of servings of dairy you should be aiming for each day. Unfortunately, up to 80% of Australians aren’t getting enough dairy each day.
With some groups needing up to 4 servings a day, how can you do it?

How to get your daily dairy

Milk, yoghurt and of course CHEESE. Ricotta, mozzarella, fetta and haloumi are all vitamin rich dairy options that fit within the Mediterranean diet. Best of all, you can easily incorporate these into breakfast, lunch or dinner. If you’re struggling with finding ways of using cheese in your cooking, make sure you follow our Instagram page for exciting and easy recipes.

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